Ehsanul Haque Jasim
About 60 leaders of ruling Awami League, BNP, Jatiya Party and other parties are preparing for the upcoming parliamentary polls in six constituencies of Sylhet district.
They are conducting campaigning at full speed and trying to get nominations from their respective parties.
Awami League believes that the party and alliance-nominated candidates can win the election in all the six constituencies, including the most-important Sylhet-1 easily, as they have heavyweight and popular candidates for all the seats.
On the other hand, BNP faces candidate shortage after the demise of former finance minister M Saifur Rahman, disappearance of BNP leader M Ilias Ali and resignation of party’s former vice chairman Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury.
Awami League and BNP have been giving special attention to Sylhet-1 constituency, but BNP has no heavyweight candidate there.
The schedule for the 11th parliamentary election will be announced on Thursday (November 8). The election is likely to be held in the third week of December.
As the time draws near, all political parties are preparing for the elections. Smaller parties are forging alliances and bargaining with larger parties over parliamentary seat sharing.
However, the hopeful candidates of Sylhet seats have already raised banners, posters, festoons and graffiti on walls and trees in their respective areas depicting their particular electoral pledges and seeking votes.
In Sylhet-1, Finance Minister AMA Muhith is current MP of the constituency. His followers said that he will contest again. On the other hand, his brother and former Bangladesh Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Dr AK Abdul Momen is also taking part in many occasions to draw the attention of voters.
AL Organizing Secretary Misbah Uddin Ahmed Siraj is also a hopeful candidate from the seat. Former Election Commissioner Sohul Hussain, and former Bangladesh Bank governor Dr Farashuddin, are also hopeful candidates from AL.
Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury recently joined Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh and he is the probable candidate from the party in the seat. BNP chairperson’s advisor Khandokar Abdul Muktadir is trying to get nomination from the BNP. Some BNP leaders said that Oikyafront leader Sultan Mohammad Mansur may contest from the seat with support of the BNP.
Dr Momen said that he is working in Sylhet at the instruction of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Misbah Uddin Ahmed Siraj said that he will try to get nomination from AL. Khandokar Abdul Muktadir said that he is working to contest the polls in Sylhet-1.
Sylhet-2 (Osmani Nogor-Bishwanth-Balagonj partial), Jatiya Party’s Yahya Chowdhury is the current MP from the Awami League-led alliance in the seat. Sylhet district unit’s general secretary of Awami League Shafiqur Rahman Chowdhury was MP from the constituency. He left the seat in 2014 polls for Jatiya Party in the interest of the AL-led grand alliance. An AL leader said that there will be no scope of repetition.
Sylhet Awami League leaders and workers said that Shafiqur Rahman Chowdhury is the perfect candidate. Former district AL president ANM Shafiqul Haque, UK AL leader Anwaruzzaman Chawdhury and district AL leader Aktaruzzman Chowdhury Joglu are also hopeful candidates from the seat.
Missing BNP leader M Ilias Ali had been elected MP from the seat in 2001. In his absence, his wife Tahsina Rushdir Luna will take part in the election. Luna said that Sylhet-2 was her husband’s constituency. She is communicating with the party men. Khelafat Mojlish leader Md Muntasir Ali is a hopeful candidate from the BNP-led 20-party alliance. Principal Dr Enamul Haque Sardar is likely to contest in the polls as independent candidate.
Sylhet-3 (South Surma-Fenchuganj-Balaganj), current AL MP Mahmud-us-Samad Chawdhury Koyes and former BNP MP Sofi Ahmed Chowdhury are trying to get their respective parties’ nomination again. UK AL leader Advocate Monir Hussain, JP Leader AlhajTufayel Ahmed, district Jatiya Party leader MS Usman Ali are also probable candidates in the constituency.
BNP leader Quaiyum Chawdhury said that he hopes that he will get his party’s nomination. Former chairman of South Surma upazila and Jamaat leader Maulana Lukman Ahmed and Khelafat Majlis leader Alhaj Delwar Hassain also want nomination from the 20-party alliance.
Sylhet-4 (Jaintapur-Goainghat-Companiganj), Awami League leader Imran Ahmed is current MP. He hopes that he is getting nomination again.
Jatiya Party leader ATU Taj Rahman is also trying to get nomination in the seat. Former MP Dildar Hussain Selim is likely to contest from the BNP. District BNP leader Shamsuzzaman Zaman, Goainghat upazila chairman Abdul Hakim Chowdhury, Jamaat leader and Jaintapur upazila chairman Jainal Abedin are also hopeful candidates in the seat.
Sylhet-5 (Kanaighat-Zakiganj), Jatiya Party’s Selim Uddin in current MP from the Awami League-led grand alliance. He is trying to get nomination again. On the other hand, Awami League leaders are now reluctant to leave the seats for Jatiya Party. Former MP Hafiz Ahmed Mazumdar, former chairman of Rupali Bank Dr Ahmed Al Kabir, Musuk Uddin Ahmed, Faizul Munir Chowdhury and Abdul Mumin Chawdhury are hopeful candidates from the Awami League. Jatiya Party leaders Zakir Hossain and Sabbir Ahmed are also hopeful candidates.
Jamaat leader Principal Maulana Farid Uddin Chawdhury was elected MP from there in 2001. He hopes that he will get nomination from 20-party alliance again. However, former BNP MP Abul Kahir Chowdhury, Kanaighat upazila chairman Asik Chowdhury, BNP leader Mamunur Rashid Mamun are also lobbying for nomination.
Sylhet-6 (Beanibazar-Golapgonj),Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid is now MP in this seat. Former MP Industrialist Dr Syed Mokbul Hussain, Canada AL leader Sarwar Hussain and JP leader Taj Rahman are also hopeful candidates. Jamaat leader Maulana Habibur Rahman was candidate of the BNP-led alliance in 2008. He is trying to get alliance’s support again. On the other hand, BNP leaders Enam Ahmed Chowdhury, Dr Shahriar Hussain Chowdhury, Maulana Rahsid Ahmed and Foysol Chawdhury are also hopeful candidates from the seat.